If we had the technologies to travel and time no one would, we understand the amount of potential ripples that could be cause. Time is seen as a river, it flows and with every change the direction changes. Any altering of the causes unforeseen consequences, hundreds of stories come from this idea. Theoretically if you where to dam the river of time you damage the surrounding ecosystem, most people wouldn’t take the chance to mess with time and yet we take the chance to mess with our own physical rivers. Instead of destroying the riverbanks of time we are destroying our environment. Hydroelectric generation has doomed us. Sure it is a clean way to generate electricity but it does have its consequences. The best things about writing about an ecological apocalypse is that there is a way to fix it unlike extraterrestrial born disasters there is a way to fix it.
Long ago, before we used water to create power we used it to turn things, and now in China it’s been used again in that way, but this time it’s slowing the turning of the earth. Classic ways to create use from a moving stream was the vertical water wheel which didn’t require damming and destruction to be of use. I am not suggesting a radical use of explosive by the eco terrorists to destroy Hover and The Three Gorges Dam.
The Three Gorges Dam is the largest man made structure in recent time. This structure according to the Scientific America is a natural disaster waiting to happen. For as big as this dam is it only produces 10% of China’s needs, provided that is 20 times more than Hoover Dam produces in America. For perspective of how big this thing really is, it measures 1.4 miles long and 607 feet tall. To use school buses as an example of size it is 215 school buses long and 17 school buses tall. This dam is five times bigger than Hoover and produces 20 times more energy. Another great benefit this dam provides is that it saves 15 million people in the Yangtze valley from deathly floods. By these numbers The Three Gorges Dam seems a great thing until you look at the other numbers that include the death toll and the economic loss it cause to China’s economy. Also it displaced 1.3 million people, so were the possible benefits worth the cost?. This dam which is conveniently placed by 6 major fault lines, slows so much water it slows the Earth’s rotation. If this dam was to break at any moment which is entirely possible earthquakes would be started and the rest of the damage is unimaginable. Not only displacing people like all dams they damage the nearby ecosystem.
Damaging the nearby ecosystem is a serious problem when it comes to daming, like everything rivers are especially affected by the ripple effect. Shocking! By damming a river or any moving body of water you cause the area to flood destroying and non aquatic plant life which will cause the food chain to be disturbed, which is not a good thing. It is one of the ways that humanity could be killed off or a large mass of us killed. hydroelectric dams are not the devil. They are a great way of storing energy and are renewable. There is a way to produce hydroelectric power without damming but you do lose the ability to store the energy. This second way is a water wheel. Both a dam and a water wheel use gravity to create this energy but they work much differently. Old hydroelectric dams use to use turbines but with a horizontal orientation. These had a problem where you had to move the water to one side to allow the wheel to turn and not be snapped. Nikola Tesla’s saved notebooks store a vast amount of knowledge on this. Eventually we switched the dams to turbines which work like jet engine, but you’re letting the water move it instead of the turbines moving the air. Waterwheels on the other hand just get turned by the moving water and don’t require a dam for a long period of time. The only time a dam is needed is for the installation of the wheel. Although the amount of time that this temporary dam is in place, is significant it is not around long enough to cause permanent damage to the area.
This is the solution I want to work for. There is no problem with using all moving bodies of water for generation of electricity other than not doing it. We can not run around installing water wheels and dams willy nilly. We must take into consideration which one will be the most efficient and the safest for the environment.